Reviews | Rethinking US rules on international travel

For the publisher: D “ The first reports indicate that the variant is less serious “(One page, December 7): Well, now even more restri...


For the publisher:

D “The first reports indicate that the variant is less serious“(One page, December 7):

Well, now even more restrictions are placed on international air travel to the United States, with testing no earlier than the day before departure being the last requirement. What’s next: testing within 10 minutes of boarding?

Why isn’t full proof of vaccination with a booster, wearing a mask at all times, and perhaps a temperature check at the airport not enough to get a U.S. citizen home? The ultimate irony here is that domestic flights do not require any vaccination, testing, or temperature control. So when a fully vaccinated person embarks on a domestic flight, they may be exposed to who knows how many anti-vaccines.

Doesn’t the government see that by piling on the demands of international flights, it is doing two things: 1) kill international travel and 2) downplay the importance of being vaccinated, the very message it doesn’t want to send ? Instead, the government should impose a simple requirement for all air travel: In addition to wearing a mask, you must be fully vaccinated or have a legitimate medical reason not to be.

The pandemic will be with us until the government finds the courage to seriously reduce the pool of unvaccinated people. That’s Immunology 101. Vaccination warrants are the best tool we have to curb the pandemic and should be extended to include all air travelers.

Michel madigan
Murphysboro, Illinois.
The author is Emeritus Professor of Microbiology at Southern Illinois University.

For the publisher:

While the restriction on entry into the United States from southern African countries has drawn criticism both at home and abroad, what is more important to consider is whether US policy regarding the rest world only requires full vaccination and before boarding negative the tests will still be as effective as China’s requirement that visitors not only be fully vaccinated and tested negative, but then must quarantine for at least 14 days in a supervised hotel (at their expense).

The fact that China has recorded just over 100,000 cases and less than 5,000 deaths – compared to nearly 50 million cases and 800,000 deaths in the United States – suggests that its strict policy is far superior to that of the United States. United.

Peter Flemming
West Caldwell, New Jersey

For the publisher:

D “Last winter, Diners froze. This year they choose»(Press article, December 3):

I find a great misunderstanding of the concept of outdoor dining. Some of the photos accompanying this article show structures so closed they are basically inside. In fact, New York City’s rules for restaurants would not classify many of these structures as outdoor and subject those places to indoor dining rules.

Unfortunately, due to lack of enforcement, understanding, and reporting, people eat in places where they think they are safe, but may well not be. I expect that in some cases, with vaccination card checks and professional ventilation, the interior spaces of some restaurants may be safer than their others. Outside structure.

Conversation of opinion
Questions around the Covid-19 vaccine and its deployment.

Especially with the emergence of the Omicron variant, New Yorkers need to better understand the risks of eating in these many poorly ventilated structures masquerading as an outdoor space and inviting unvaccinated customers.

Four walls and a roof sound like inside to me.

Eric scheer
Queens

For the publisher:

As a scientific researcher specializing in early childhood education in New England, I very much appreciated “The solution to poverty? Invest in childrenBy David L. Kirp (guest essay, December 5).

In this regard, Vermont has a head start thanks to a act by state legislators in 2014 create a universal nursery school. Clearly, there is pressure for similar action at the national level, as all children in this country deserve to have access to high quality preschool education.

In the four years since Vermont’s universal pre-K was signed into law, enrollment numbers in state-funded pre-K have jumped 30 percent. It is no wonder. Young learners thrive in such environments with guidance from dedicated professionals covering a variety of topics, from social and emotional learning to math.

While there have been transition challenges, the people of Vermont are committed to continual improvement and are proud to be on the right side of early childhood education history.

Claire Waterman
Peacham, Vermont.
The author is a researcher at the Center for Educational Development.

For the publisher:

It’s ironic that the Supreme Court seems poised to wipe out Roe (if not overthrow it) so soon after your article has written about young couples who decide to remain childless due to the state of the environment, the country and the world (“In times like this, is it still okay to procreate?Sunday Styles, November 21).

This discussion may be moot in light of the potential ruling from the country’s highest court, which could remove the possibility of that choice for these couples – and in so doing, force them to raise families in precisely the world for which they feel that they are not their children.

In fact, defeating Roe will only strengthen that worldview.

Naomi Segal Deitz
Portland, Ore.

For the publisher:

D “Can a machine learn morality?“(Affairs, November 23):

The attempt to teach ethics to an artificial intelligence system is a step towards an uncomfortable but inevitable realization: any attempt at machine ethics involves codifying concepts that humans have never quite succeeded in fully rendering. self-explanatory.

Millennia of brilliant minds in philosophy have not achieved any authoritative ethical system, and there is no particular reason to believe that they will ever do so.

Fortunately, human beings are able to turn to our own innate sense of empathy and fairness, varying between cultures but ultimately derived from evolved tendencies oriented towards social stability, to resolve the shortcomings of ethical guidelines. Machines do not have such instincts and therefore cannot help exposing the shortcomings of any fixed set of moral principles.

No matter how “educated” an AI can only be a repository of what humans have previously decided; he cannot tell us anything that we do not already know.

Rob louis
Cazenovia, NY
The writer holds a doctorate. student at UMass Amherst and teaches courses involving AI, ethics and media.

For the publisher:

D “Baseball Finally Gets a Full Image on HodgesBy Tyler Kepner (On Baseball, December 7):

I was happy to read that Gil Hodges was ultimately elected posthumously to the Baseball Hall of Fame as a player. I will never forget June 1968 when he was manager of the New York Mets. I called the Mets office to ask to speak to Mr. Hodges. I was surprised when he picked up the phone.

I told him I was from upstate New York and wanted to surprise my dad on his birthday with two tickets to an upcoming Mets game. I told him I was ready to pay for the tickets, but asked if he could arrange some really good seats. He took my name and told me the tickets would be at the Will Call box office.

When we got to Shea Stadium I walked over to the window and was pleasantly surprised to learn that Mr. Hodges had paid for the tickets. And they were in the first row behind the Mets canoe.

With all his attributes as the player and manager who led the Mets to the 1969 World Series Championship, this former New Yorker will remember him as a nice man, a true mensch.

(Rabbi) Reuven H. Taff
Sacramento

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